Last of a Dying Breed
The book is divided into three sections. The first is Sky Haiku, a collection of pieces in which, over decades, Ed Manual has attempted to write in a tradition going back many centuries in Japan -- of the short three-line poem which might, as poet Ezra Pound said, "present an image". Ed has drawn inspiration from the early haiku masters. The second section is Road Poems, a group of "free verse" -- without regular rhyme, meter, etc. -- poems penned while driving through various states in the US. The final section, Other Poems, offers a mix of free verse pieces culled from different stages in a writing career, up to the present. The work is complemented by a series of illustrations -- including the cover art -- by artist Tom Mahady, who joins Ed here in their second collaboration. Tom also enhanced the booklet SPRING HAIKU with more of his striking collage/ink drawings. He holds an MFA from Hunter College in New York City, and his 12'X12' oil on canvas hangs in the City of St. Charles (IL) Municipal Center. "With haiku as fine as: 'Branches / reaching for buds, / buds for leaves', Ed Manual alerts us to much pleasure to come in the highly imagistic, sharply realized poems which follow in this rich and substantial collection -- one, surely, worth our keenest attention and admiration." -- Lucien Stryk
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